Fri 5th Dec 2008

Poor masses suffer under ULP economic policies

While showcasing SVG Green Party's Economic Model in Kingstown on Friday 29th November 2008, many people explained to the Leader of SVG Green Party, Ivan O'Neal, that they were suffering badly under these harsh ULP regime economic policies.

VAT is considered outrageous and wicked to say the least. Most persons are asking for it to be abolished. Their second worry is the high price of electricity and the high cost of sending their children to school. A number of persons also complained about the poor delivery of health care at the Milton Cato Hospital and the rural health clinics. One lady said she had to spend almost an entire day waiting before getting medical attention.

High unemployment and low or no incomes, makes it difficult for them to even make a dollar by way of the ice boxes. One person said that there are people all over this country who cannot even buy bread and sugar. Many children are leaving school and cannot find employment.

In terms of agriculture, a gentleman from the rural community has remarked that grass is taking over the arable lands. Many banana farms are going out of production, which supports the claim by the Ministry of Agriculture that banana output has fallen from over 100 million dollars to only 8 million dollars. SVG Green Party considers this drop to be devastating for farmers and their families.

Several persons also complained that the government asked them to plant cassava root and at maturity there is no market for their produce. There is absolutely no confidence in the agriculture industry. This is a clear sign that the economy is crumbling. In the words of one person, 'the Ministers are just marking time for the next election to be called so they can qualify for their gratuity and pensions'.

All this talk by PM Gonsalves that it is difficult to manage without grants is nonsense. SVG Green Party has conducted a nationwide profile of the SVG economy and we can confirm that there are at least twenty sectors, repeat, twenty sectors of indigenous resources on which the SVG economy can be driven under sustainable strategies. This will create over 3,000 thousand new jobs and over a half a billion dollars in new revenue to the Treasury.

SVG has had 7 wasted years under the ULP regime, whose poor leadership has supervised the rapid decline of almost every sector of the economy. There is not one positive project that has helped production or employment. It is time for the incompetent ULP to go.

SVG urgently needs a change, where we refocus and create a multi-sector, export driven economy. It is wrong that families go hungry, children leave school with no opportunities and our bills are so high. The forgotten poor and unemployed have a right to respect and happier a life.

SVG Green Party will transform the nation into a land of opportunity and compassion. People will be able to wake up in the morning and look forward to the day ahead and not have to worry about where the next dollar will come to feed hungry children or pay overdue bills. SVG must go Green!

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